Colombian singer-songwriter Tei Shi is nothing short of a revelation. Since her first EP in 2013, her unique sound has propelled her steadily upward, and it’s quite clear that she’s destined blow up. Born as Valerie Teicher in Argentina and having moved back and forth between Colombia, Vancouver, Boston, and New York City, Tei Shi’s varied upbringing prompted her to become attached to specific memories, highlighted in the childhood recordings interspersed between songs on her debut album, Crawl Space.
The album, released in March of this year, is a triumphant examination of overcoming fears, be it fear of the dark or fear of being misjudged as an artist. Sonically, it’s a combination of wispy romanticism and dance-worthy beats. Overall, Crawl Space is something to behold, and it’s created serious buzz, earning Tei Shi attention from major music news outlets from Noisey to NPR to Billboard.
Tei Shi’s burgeoning popularity was evident last night as she played a nearly sold out show at the Echoplex in Echo Park. Her impressive range shown flawlessly on tracks like “Lift Me,” a funky and harmonic piece with crowd pleasing vocal flourishes reminiscent of Mariah Carey’s famous whistle range. Her superb live sound was complimented even more by her tenacious stage presence, a perfect combination of sensual and self-assured. Unafraid of getting intimate, Tei Shi stripped down the accompaniment to croon at the audience for the romantic “Como Si,” the only track from Crawl Space in her native language. The crowd absolutely adored her, dancing and singing along to tracks like the catchy “Say You Do,” and begging her not to leave. Not one to disappoint, Tei Shi came back for an encore that ended in the bombastic “Bassically,” sending the crowd into a frenzy as she hit the infectious hooks with marked effortlessness. If it wasn’t for a 10pm hard out, surely the crowd would never have let her go. Even so, she stuck around to sign autographs for enthusiastic fans.
If you haven’t yet heard Crawl Space, it’s well worth giving it a listen, or twelve. If at all possible, you simply must see this woman live – she’s a born performer who holds back nothing, even on all those high notes. Tei Shi’s not one to sleep on, and it’s only a matter of time before she skyrockets to the top of the charts.